Super Tuesday Biden Victories Questioned by Election Watchers
(Breaking, March 9th, WFAA News: Fully 10% of votes in Dallas County, Texas were not counted; recount possible.)
Wildly divergent exit polls in South Carolina and Massachusetts, and documented voting problems in California and Texas, have prompted veteran election watchers to suggest that there may have been election fraud and voter suppression on Super Tuesday, always at the expense of the Bernie Sanders vote.
Are Exit Polls an Indicator of Election Fraud?
Edison Research/CNN polls show 4-point and 7-point discrepancies in South Carolina and Massachusetts, respectively, between the computer-tallied vote totals and exit polling. Exit polls are considered by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to be one reliable—although not in itself conclusive—indicator of election fraud. Election fraud may be perpetrated by the hacking of vote tabulation machines or reporting incorrect results that are different from the tally tapes from each machine.
Although exit polls may be wrong, which even among experts are considered just one limited but useful tool for detecting fraud, it is more unusual when the errors always point in the same direction. Both the SC and MA exit polls showed Sanders doing better than the official vote tallies.
The Biden Bounce
In South Carolina, where Joe Biden scored what was described extensively in the media as the "Biden Bounce," Biden gained nearly 5 points in the official tally over the exit poll projection, and an astonishing 7 points in the official tally in Massachusetts. The typical margin of error for Edison Research polls is 3%.
Owner of TDMSResearch.com Theodore de Macedo Soares wrote of Massachusetts after the primaries:
"The 2020 Massachusetts Democratic Party presidential primary was held on March 3, 2020. Election results from the computerized vote counts differed significantly from the results projected by the exit poll conducted by Edison Research and published by CNN at poll’s closing. As in the 2016 Massachusetts primary between candidates Sanders and Clinton, disparities greatly exceed the exit poll’s margin of error. Sanders won Massachusetts in the exit poll and lost it in the computer count."
Soares has noted that it is particularly suspicious when other exit polls seem to be quite accurate in other contests, or with respect to candidates of little interest. In 2016, exit polls between Hillary Clinton and Sanders were off in a manner that favored Clinton, but were always within a point of being accurate in other races.
It should be noted that Soares' calculations are based on early, "unadjusted" exit polls, which are based on surveys alone. Controversially, polling companies often "adjust" the numbers to more closely match the machine-count totals. A New York Times article says of this year's Michigan primary exit polls:
"The numbers on this page are preliminary estimates from exit polls. They will eventually be adjusted to match the actual vote count."
Polling companies have never adequately explained how it is scientific to fudge the results of raw data.
Since Edison Research did not publish overall results for each candidate, Soares used the gender-based results to arrive at total figures.
Bernie Sanders polled a 1-point victory over Biden in 2020 Massachusetts exit polls, but in the official tally Biden scored a nearly 7-point win. Biden's victory in SC would have been whittled down by 4 points had exit polling been correct, but Biden nevertheless would have won massively in the early primary state.
Long Lines at Polls Diminished Voter Turnout in L.A. and Texas
Sanders won handily in California, but his haul of delegates might have been even greater had more people been able to vote at walk-in polling stations. In a rare piece of mainstream journalism, the Wall Street Journal editorial board denounced the conduct of the California primary in "California Steals Its Own Election: Voting reforms create an electoral mess and deny Sanders a bigger win."
Long lines at polls tend to harm younger voters the most, since the vote-by-mail constituency is heavily weighted to older voters. Young voters are one demographic in which Sanders tends to do particularly well. The long lines in L.A. also heavily impacted Latino voters, another Sanders stronghold.
Many people dropped out of lines, unable to wait hours to vote due to work, school, or family responsibilities.
The long lines in California prompted election officials to apologize. Los Angeles County Registrar Dean Logan, the top official of California's largest county and the largest county in the nation, told the Los Angeles Times:
“This was a challenging day for a lot of voters in L.A. County and I certainly apologize for that...That’s something that has to be better.”
In Santa Monica, one voter wrote to the L.A. Times:
"I attempted to vote six times on Tuesday in Santa Monica but was unable to do so because of long lines. Wait times ranged from an hour and a half to four hours. I have voted in Santa Monica in the last four elections and have never had to wait longer than 20 minutes to cast my ballot."
In Texas, where Biden won by four-and-a-half points, USA Today reported:
"In Houston, voters who got in line at Texas Southern University, a historically black institution in a neighborhood of color, before the 7 p.m. deadline had to wait for hours to vote — many of them well past midnight, which means they were voting a day late. Some news accounts described the wait as nearly a full work shift."
Before the South Carolina primary and Super Tuesday days later, Sanders had a strong polling lead in Texas.
In California, KQED News Radio reported in "Lawmakers Demand Changes to Los Angeles Voting After Long Lines and Delays":
"California officials are demanding changes to Los Angeles County's voting process after some Angelenos waited hours to cast ballots during California's primary election on Tuesday. State Sen. Ben Allen, D-Santa Monica, announced Thursday that he'll introduce legislation for the general election that would require the county to either mail every voter a ballot or open more locations where votes can be cast."
In a March 5th article "Why Did It Take so Long to Vote in Texas and California?" - the New York Times wrote:
"On a day when most voting went smoothly, the two largest states in the Super Tuesday elections, California and Texas, struggled with hours-long lines in some major cities and complaints from some voting-rights groups that officials were seeking to reduce turnout for political reasons."
Newsweek reported on the day after Super Tuesday:
"Hours-long voting lines in parts of Texas led to significant frustration on Super Tuesday, with some suggesting that "voter suppression" was at play, particularly as the problems seemed to affect minority and student communities."
Some in the election-watching community challenged the notion that voting problems were the accidental result of unexpectedly high voter turnout. Independent journalist and podcast radio host Brad Freidman, of Los Angeles, wrote:
"Voting ground to a near halt on Super Tuesday in a number of states, most notably in major jurisdictions in Texas and California relying on electronic pollbooks and unverifiable computer touchscreen Ballot Marking Devices (BMDs). Who could have predicted it? Oh, yeah. We did."
In an article run by Amy Goodman's Democracy Now, "Long Lines, Closed Polling Stations Hurt Black, Latinx & Student Voters in TX, CA," author and election expert Ari Berman observed:
"...in places like Dallas and Houston and San Antonio, that’s where you saw disproportionate lines. They were not the same lines in wealthy white neighborhoods that there were in black and Latino and neighborhoods where a lot of young people voted."
Both California and Texas were crucial to Sanders, who fared poorly in the southern states. The voting fiascos received no coverage in the major network broadcast media, which instead has been focused on the narrative of Joe Biden's new "momentum." This is even though the result is still not final in California, as millions of "provisional ballots" are still being counted, and will continue to be counted for weeks.
Provisional ballots are a type of ballot issued to voters in California who have recently changed parties, or enrolled in a party, who have had a change of address or who do not show proper ID. These hurdles to voting on a regular Democratic ballot were described by a whistleblower L.A. poll worker who was interviewed by citizen journalists The Convo Couch.
In Massachusetts, Freedom of Information Act requests have been sent to various city election officials asking for access to the ballot images which are generated by many optical scanner vote counting machines, in order to verify the vote counts. Election integrity activists say these images are one means of easily cross-checking vote-counting machine tallies.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.